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Best Restaurant in Astoria

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Dining at Kabab Café is a highly personalized experience, in part by necessity, because food is prepared and served in a space not much larger than a studio apartment. Chef and owner Ali El Sayed hails from Alexandria, Egypt, and like the city’s ancient library, he’s a fountain of knowledge. He’ll help you figure out how to proceed, food-wise — don’t even bother with the menu — and he might lay down a little philosophy while he makes, say, a mezze plate with Middle Eastern dips, crispy kale, and some excellent falafel; an appetizer of sweetbreads doused in lemon; and chicken cooked in a pomegranate reduction. He may guide you toward cuts of meat you’ve never tried before — heart, brain, testicles — but given his knack for infusing every dish with expertly harmonized flavors and soul, you can’t go wrong.

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